A judge allowed a Rochester man to stop paying spousal maintenance because doing so would place him under â€œextreme hardship.â€ According to an August 27, 2012 New York Law Journal article, there is a law open to much interpretation that allows for adjustment in support payments if there would be an â€œextreme hardshipâ€ on the individual who is making payments.
The man in this case had a job but is now unemployed and lives below the poverty level. His wife who lives just above the poverty level and received disability payments sued him for money. She said that he has received money from his parents, has worked odd jobs, has not looked enough for a new job and has a retirement account. He was able to prove that each of these factors did not matter for spousal support. For example, his only odd job paid him $180 and afterwards, he sold his power tools to pay for his daughterâ€™s college tuition. He is going to use his retirement account to pay for her tuition. His parents are providing money for groceries as an advance of his inheritance. Also, he provided a three page list of jobs he applied for but did not get
As a result, the judge interpreted the law and said that paying the original amount of support ordered would be an â€œextreme hardship.â€ The judge eliminated his support payments going forward.
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